Thursday, February 13, 2014

Day 252


February 13, 2014

Day 252

It’s been one of those weeks where I’ve been running like crazy.  I’m not overly fond of those.  What would I do if I had a job?  Although, David, bless his heart, is convinced I do.  Like I didn’t have enough to do, I got asked to participate in the Nielson rating system for the last week.  So I’ve had these little booklets, one for each tv, and I’ve had to record every show we’ve watched and who watched it.  The beginning pages of the booklet want to know a bunch of classification info, like our races, ages, etc.  One spot I had to fill in the number of hours a week I work.  Since I do have the city clerk job I wrote in “2” in that spot.  David was looking through the booklets and brought it to me, “Uh, Mom,” he said, “You work a lot more than just two hours a week!”  I think he’s my favorite kid right now!

Paul always had a thing for cats, but would only allow kittens in the house (until last March when he got Bella for me)
Will may be, too.  He’s been working like a mad man on my new bedroom.  My days of sleeping on David’s new, but hard mattress are numbered!  I really, really wanted a window for the east wall of the bedroom.  This will be the wall behind my headboard.  I was envisioning something narrow, maybe about 3’ long.  Will was a little dubious about his ability to install a new window anyway and then we couldn’t find anything that looked right.  All Menards had were basement type of windows that were long and narrow.  I felt myself starting to get pouty and had to talk myself out of that really quickly!  It wasn’t Will’s fault he’s never put in a window before and if I want one that bad, I can pay someone else to do it!  But then we found these octagonal windows and I remembered that when Paul was building the bathroom in that same spot he mentioned that he had been half-tempted to buy one of those windows, in anticipation of our eventual bedroom being there.  Will said he’d research it to see what it would take to do it.  And I found that I could be content with that.   Later that day, he told me that he felt confident enough that he could put it in and built a frame in the wall for it.  I’ll have to wait until it warms up a little more before we go cutting a hole in the wall, but it will come!


It’s been a very raw week for me, emotion-wise.  I’m sure it’s just because it’s February.  I have been reminded of those first couple of months after the funeral.  It’s been that intensity of pain, where I feel like I could just walk doubled over.  The pain feels physical, even though it’s all emotional.  Times like this make me wonder if I have healed at all since June!  If I can still hurt this badly 8 months into this, what does that bode for the future?  Sigh…

But – people are wonderful.  Last night at church a young wife who just started attending our church with her husband came up to me and told me that she had heard I had a wedding anniversary this month and that she was praying for me and gave me a hug.  How sweet!  And last weekend another friend slipped me a substantial sum of money, telling me it was for the trip the kids and I are taking at the time of anniversary anniversary (is that what it would be called now?).  It really meant a lot to me that she thought our trip has such value that she was willing to sacrifice like that for our pleasure!

My dentist issues may be solved.  It occurred to me over the weekend that I should ask my dentist in Pleasantville if he would consider taking the kids.  I had no idea if their office dealt with Medicaid, and if they did, if they would take new patients with it.  So I called and was told that no, they weren’t taking any new patients.  That’s about what I expected.  But then the receptionist asked, “Would you hold on a minute, Sarah?”  So I did and after a bit she came back to the phone and told me that she had spoken with the dentist and since they know me and they know my situation (of being widowed – Paul was a patient there, too) they wanted the kids to come to office, Medicaid and all.  Of course, when I gave her all the info, the receptionist gasped and exclaimed, “You have SIX kids?!  I had no idea!”  Yes, well…It’s not the office I would have chosen for the kids.  It’s not a pediatric-only facility, like where the kids have attended for years.  Of course, when I was kid, we just went to a regular dentist and stared at nature prints on the wall.  We didn’t have movies to watch, tv screens located above our heads, cool sunglasses to wear, flavored gloves on the hygienist, chocolate-flavored toothpaste, and toys as a reward.  Will (who has regular insurance now) had to get two fillings yesterday.  He came home, scowled at me, and commented, “This dentist doesn’t use a laser!”  Oh yeah – that, too.  This one actually sticks a needle in the gum. But I survived going to a regular dentist and the kids will, too.

Hopefully, Ben will be ok.  He is my main concern in all this.

And another friend gave me the name of an orthodontic office in Des Moines that is more receptive to Medicaid.  So I need to call them for David one of these days.  I suppose I should get a move on this.  We’re going to be doing senior pictures in less than 4 years and he needs to have his smile straightened before then!

The picture we had done for our 10th wedding anniversary - Feb. '03
I wrecked my driver’s mirror this week on my van.  This was one of those times where I was kind of relieved that Paul was no longer among the living.  He was great about big accidents.  Every time I wrecked one of our vehicles he was really kind to me.  He didn’t blame me.  He’d just hug me and remind me that the important thing was that we were all ok and that this is what insurance was for.  But when it came to little accidents (like every time I ran over the gutter or knocked over  the water meter thing) he was less patient.  I had to remind him that females don’t have as good of perceptive vision as males do (that’s a biological fact) nor are we as good at judging distances (also a fact).  He’d just grumble something about “women drivers.”  So, the other day I decided to get the mail on my way home.  We live at the top of the hill and sometimes it’s not such a good idea to drive up it during the winter.  But I’ve been really impressed with my new tires and how well they perform on snow and ice.  So I thought I’d be ok.  I got the mail and then my van started slipping backwards, even though it was in drive.  Before I knew it my mirror was flush against the van as it smashed into my mailbox.  Then, I got the van stopped, but my mirror popped back out and now it was stuck between my mailbox and the neighbor’s, right next to it!  If I went forward, I’d hit my mailbox again, and if I reversed, I’d hit the neighbors!  I was stuck!  David was with me so he trotted up to the house and got Will, who was immediately overcome by laughter when he saw my predicament.  I didn’t think it was all that funny!  But he pushed my van sideways and I got out without further incident.   It’s going to cost me $168 to replace the mirror.  I am definitely NOT laughing about that. But I’m still glad Paul’s not around to be witness to this, just the same!

I asked Sam how his Amanda the Panda group is going; specifically, if the other kids in his class behave themselves.  I was just curious, as well as making conversation.  Sam told me that some of the kids like to use bad words, like “taking God’s Word in vain!”  That made me laugh on the inside (not the fact that 5 and 6 year olds are swearing, but him saying “word” instead of “name”).  But Lizzie then asked, “Why don’t we do that?”  Before I could formulate a response, she exclaimed, “Oh, I know!  It’s because we’re a good family!”   Wow, well…ok!  I guess they’ve learned the lesson about not swearing, but perhaps some lessons on humility might be in order next?

Ellie’s vocabulary continues to explode.  She talks in complete sentences.  I am trying to remember if any of my boys could talk this well at 2 ½.  I kind of doubt it.  Right now it’s just so cute.  I’ll see her standing there and it’s obvious she wants to say something, but she’s struggling to remember and find the words she needs.  It’s like she’s running every word she knows through her little brain, testing them out, to see if she has found the right one!

I finally called a financial adviser this week.  I went to Dave Ramsey's website and looked at his list of recommended advisers. This guy has supposedly gone through Financial Peace University and read some of Dave's books.   I have put doing this  off and off.  I don’t want to think about money, although I certainly worry about it enough! I don’t like numbers anyway, and   I think there is a part of me that has been afraid to meet with someone.  I’m afraid he’ll look at my circumstances and what I have to work with and tell me, “Lady, you are so screwed!”  Sometimes not knowing is preferable to knowing.  But I did it.  I meet with him on Mar. 5.  That was the soonest I had an opening on my calendar.  I don’t think I’ll run out of money before then, anyway.

Well, it’s getting late.  I’ve got short people that I need to get to bed.  Tomorrow is grocery shopping day, after I get my mirror fixed.  And it’s Valentine’s Day, of course.  I have gifts for the kids and I’ll pick up some Papa Murphy’s heart shaped pizzas for supper.  I’ll come home, throw the pizzas in, and enlist the kids’ help in unloading and putting away the groceries.  We’ll eat and then we’ll watch Ben’s gift, the latest Tim Hawkins dvd.  I’ll put the kids to bed all over again and then David and I will watch Monk before going to bed ourselves.  Honestly, it won’t be too dissimilar from all the Valentine’s Days we experienced when Paul was alive.  Since our anniversary was so close to the holiday, we kept our expectations and plans for Valentine’s low-key.

Our 10th anniversary trip (to the big city of Des Moines - we lived out west then) - It was the 1st time we did something like that - so, so much fun!
But I won’t get a Valentine, chocolate, and present from Paul this year.  Or ever again.  Just yesterday I was in Walmart and as I passed the card section, for a fraction of a moment I found myself thinking, “Oh, I need to get a Valentine’s card for Paul – I haven’t done that yet!”  It’s funny how habits get so ingrained and become a part of you that you can momentarily forget that biggest heartache in your own life.  Every year I would get him a funny Valentine’s card.  I knew I’d be buying something mushy for him for our anniversary the next week, so I’d use this holiday to try and be more humorous.  Plus, I like the song, “My Funny Valentine” so thinking of that song title would make me consciously or unconsciously go for the humorous card section.

No more cards, no more chocolate, no more “I love you’s” and “Forever Your Valentine” signed on pink cards.  Just emptiness … and one ripped out, shredded, bleeding heart.


I write that and again feel very properly sorry for myself!  But I am immediately reminded of the six (well, five – Will is going to be inexplicably keeping Nathanael company tomorrow night – isn’t that boy engaged or something? Of all the nights one would want to spend with their intended, I would think Valentine’s night would be at the top of the list!) Valentines I’ll have crowding around the table tomorrow night.  I am blessed.  I may be lonely, but I will never, ever be alone and I will never be unloved.  Happy Valentine’s Day to me..

1 comment:

  1. I continue to treasure how REAL you are. I met a lady (for the first and only time) who was (I thought) a bit cavalier about a friend of hers whose toddler drowned in the last year. There was a lot of "God prepared them" and "God will work through this." Yeah, I know that is true but the reality is that when you lose someone you love, it rips a large hole in your heart. I've had 4 miscarriages and they've changed me forever, and I never even saw those precious babes face to face. To lose a husband, or a child...yes, the Lord is with us but it is right to say it is agonizingly painful.

    We've always had our kids go to "normal" dentists because the pediatric dentists in our area, without exception, don't allow parents to go back in the rooms with the kids. I don't let my kids alone with unknown people so that was OUT. I was really shocked that they wouldn't allow me to be there, and indeed it still makes me mad as going to the dentist can be traumatic and I want to be there.

    We did one of those Neilsen ratings things and it was funny -- we don't watch TV much and have only 1 TV connected to an antenna and that week, we literally watched NOTHING on the TV. I wonder what they did. Just threw out our survey?

    God bless, Laraba